Burma earthquake: 6.8 magnitude quake strikes in centre of country

Quake felt several hundred miles away in Bangkok, Thailand

Samuel Osborne@SamuelOsborne93
Wednesday 24 August 2016 12:12
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6.8 magnitude earthquake hits Burma

An earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 6.8 has struck central Burma.

The US Geological Survey said the quake was centered about 25 kilometers (15 miles) west of Chauk, an area west of the ancient capital of Bagan.

Residents of Yangon, the country's main city, rushed from tall buildings and objects toplled from tables and from Buddhist shrines in homes.

At least 65 centuries-old brick pagodas in Bagan (also known as Pagan) were damaged, the Ministry of Religious and Cultural Affairs said in a statement.

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Dr. Myo Thant, general secretary of the Myanmar Earthquake Committee, said other areas apparently were not badly affected and there were no reports of deaths.

However, a firefighter in Pakokku, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to release information, told the AP a woman there was reportedly killed. The report could not immediately be confirmed.

The USGS said the quake was located fairly far below the Earth's surface at a depth of about 84 kilometers (52 miles). Deep earthquakes generally cause less surface damage.

The quake was felt in half a dozen states in neighbouring India and caused buildings to sway in Bangkok, Thailand's capital.

Earlier this morning at least 37 people died after a 6.2 quake struck central Italy. Officials warned the death toll is likely to rise.

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